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Ely
Ely, Counselor at Law
Category: Legal
Satisfied Customers: 100009
Experience:  Private practice with focus on family, criminal, PI, consumer protection, and business consultation.
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My husband was served small claims court papers in October

Customer Question

Hello-my husband was served small claims court papers in October or November 2014 for collections in a monetary amount w/no complex ruling. Does he need to file a "case managment statement" prior to showing up in court? Also, he states to me that he tried to resolve these issues last year with the loan manager of the financial institution where he had the loan and the loan manager refused to help. Could that be a viable defense in court?
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Legal
Expert:  Ely replied 1 year ago.

Hello and welcome to JustAnswer. Please note:This is general information and is not legal advice. No specific course of action is proposed herein, and no attorney-client relationship or privilege is formed by speaking to an expert on this site. By continuing, you confirm that you understand and agree to these terms.

I am sorry to hear about this situation.

Does he need to file a "case managment statement" prior to showing up in court?

Generally speaking, no. See HERE. Most small claims court cases do not require case management statements. He can check with the clerk of the court to get a copy of the local rules to see if that court requires it. Most do not in such cases.

Also, he states to me that he tried to resolve these issues last year with the loan manager of the financial institution where he had the loan and the loan manager refused to help. Could that be a viable defense in court?

No. Attempts to settle a debt is not an affirmative defense to the debt. In addition, generally speaking, whatever is stated in mediation/arbitration/negotiation for the debt can generally not be used as evidence, anyhow.

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Customer: replied 1 year ago.
The amount is a limited civil case and does not exceed $10,000. What are some good "tactics" for going into a court room and coming out with paying as little as possible. He knows that he borrowed the money, and is willing to pay what he borrowed back,
but the financial institution quoted to him that if they took him to court they would be able to collect more money, so they were not going to work with him.
Expert:  Ely replied 1 year ago.

There is no silver bullet to debt, I am afraid. The best way is to negotiate closer to the end of the month with the collection agency, when the collection agents have to meet their quota.

Another way is to threaten bankruptcy, which works more with the legal firm. If they believe you, then they may decide to settle for a lesser amount, because they know that if a BK is filed, then the debt would be voided all together or reduced to pennies on a dollar.

Gentle Reminder: Please, use REPLY or SEND button to keep chatting, or RATE POSITIVELY and SUBMIT your rating when we are finished. You may always ask follow ups at no charge after rating.

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
But there have to be some defenses that can help in small claims? What are some that have helped other people?
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
If a judgement is made, don't they still allow payments?
Expert:  Ely replied 1 year ago.

There are of course defenses to a contract, but only to specific situations. See HERE for a listing of some of the most common.

If the Plaintiff gets a judgment, they can accept partial payment from the Defendant if they want to, OR, they can try to for example levy a bank account toward satisfaction of judgment.

Gentle Reminder: Please, use REPLY or SEND button to keep chatting, or RATE POSITIVELY and SUBMIT your rating when we are finished. You may always ask follow ups at no charge after rating.

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